I’m on the Superfast VI ferry travelling between Patras and Ancona, Italy on the
Adriatic. I booked a four-berth outside cabin and have lucked out as there are no other passengers in it. Having the four passenger cabin to myself feels decadent.
Andrew, a fisherman, was the brother of Simon Peter, and a follower of John the Baptist; he introduced his brother to Jesus. According to tradition Andrew was martyred in Patras by Aegeas, the governor of the region. He is believed to have been crucified on an “X” shaped cross on the site where the Basilica now stands. All of this is represented in iconography and mosaics in the Basilica. The church features a display of fragments of what is understood to be the cross upon which Andrew was martyred.
While I was visiting there was a steady stream of mostly older believers, who reverently addressed the reliquary and icons. The Basilica is very much an active church and the courtyard was filled with schoolchildren at recess from the associated school.